George Washington statue at University of Texas (UT) against blue sky in Austin, Texas

Frank Zambrano starts his day at 5:30 a.m. by unlocking the 183 University of Texas at Austin (UT) campus buildings Custodial Services maintains, according to Daily Texan reports. UT has 14.8 million square feet maintained by custodial services, and each employee is responsible for 33,143 square feet, according UT Facilities Services.

The earliest shifts start at 5:30 a.m. and the latest end at 2 a.m., so there are custodians maintaining the Austin campus more than 20 hours every day.

Sally Moore, associate director of Custodial Services, has worked at UT since she was 19, and 40 years later, she is still trying to inspire change around campus. She says she enjoys bringing in improvement into the workplace and making jobs easier and better for all of the employees.

One change Moore has pushed for since she was promoted to associate director is better wages for the custodians. In 2017, their starting wage was increased from $11 to $13 per hour, but Moore said they are still working for an additional increase.

The hard work of custodians does not go unnoticed by students and staff, but it seems Moore is their biggest cheerleader. She told Daily Texan reporters that she is thankful for the dedication from the people she works with.

“I am proud of them, and they do hard work without a whole lot of thanks sometimes,” Moore said. “We try to make sure that they know we appreciate them.”

That appreciation expands beyond the praise Moore already gives her team. She has also been involved in implementing comprehensive and thorough training programs that propels the program forward and empowers the staff.

For the efforts, UT was recognized in 2017 with multiple Cleaning Industry Awards, presented by the Simon Institute. The group took home the Logistics Award for possessing a high logistics score in the audited network of custodial operations, the Safety Award, the Best Training Program, and the Best Cleaning Team.

Continuing their efforts to advancement, UT expanded their zero waste initiatives in 2018.